"I'm on a journey, a quest
to fill in the gaps
of a purposefully false education,
full of omissions and subtle slant"

This collection of poetry answers the call of our times to seek knowledge, historical fact, and truth as a means to understand racial injustice and inequity. Kantor sets off on a quest to learn about the African-American experience left out of the lessons she learned at school. Through visits to museums and historical sites and rigorous reflective practice, she begins to uncover the past and stares it down unflinchingly. With each encounter, she distills the truth in poems that ache with revelation. She looks to the past as a way to grapple with the racially motivated killings of Trayvon Martin and George Floyd. She wants to understand the history of racism in America, so she visits southern states like Alabama and Mississippi and specifically tours the Civil Rights Museum and powerful monuments to the legacy of slavery. Then she captures her response in stirring, insightful poems that demonstrate her desire to grapple with the past in search of healing in the present. She is open-minded and open-hearted in her exploration and desire to "re-educate" herself.

Kantor sees it as her responsibility to raise her awareness as a white woman who sees racial injustice in the news and in her own life working at a community college. She recognizes white privilege in the disparate experiences of her students. In the poem "A Chance," she writes about two boys guilty of the same crime. The white teen is punished by his parents but is given another chance by the judge. The black teen "will probably end up in juvey or jail." In another poem, "Different Diplomas," she writes about a student who is the first to graduate in his family but will go to college with "a bare bones urban education / and a set of eighth grade skills." He will struggle to succeed and realize that the others celebrating graduation "were pumping fists full of gold." Where others have opportunities, he will have barriers. Kantor sees the disadvantages that her black students face in their everyday life and is spurred to understand the role of history in the current system that refuses to recognize social injustice.

The author chooses action over apathy, not content to stew in ignorance. She seeks knowledge and truth, and her hard-earned insight comes through in each searing piece. In the spirit of activism, these poems will inspire readers to consider the impact of slavery on modern society and to question the reasons why black people are still treated unfairly. The verses in this book will undoubtedly enter the dialogue that is growing increasingly loud regarding the teaching of history in America. Kantor speaks candidly of the gaps in her own education regarding African-American history, an issue that is just as pressing and relevant today as school systems are pressured to leave out the painful parts of the nation's past. Kantor makes a strong case for individual responsibility despite the failings of a system to educate fully and robustly. There is an urgency to the author's poems. Anger hovers at the edges along with deep-seated frustration for the failings of an oppressive society that cannot seem to right the wrongs of the past or even face those wrongs. Kantor is willing and pursues her education and awakening with insistence and dogged commitment. She then captures it all in beautiful poems of truth and empathy.

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